Good day ladies and gentlemen and welcome to the first Film Flare's Film Diary of 2013 (not counting my delayed last 2012 entry).
This week, I will also be starting my countdown of the 5 best films that I saw last year. Starting, rather sensibly, with number 5. Keep your peepers peeled for that in the coming days.
But for now, on with the show/diary/blog/thing.
Chernobyl Diaries (released 2012)
Some late night Wednesday viewing here.
In all fairness, this is a tense, atmospheric film with TONS of potential that the unique setting and ideas infuse the film with but in the end it ends up being a little disappointing.
The cast starts out pretty standard, the pretty girls and boys who almost always end up being nothing more than practise for the horrors of the villain. But after twenty or thirty minutes, despite the acting, you end up caring about them. This is a positive, it infuses the characters with emotion and makes you care about them. There are cliches abound with the characters, the one who is looking to marry his girlfriend when (if) they get to Moscow, the fiesty female survivor and the dodgy ex-army Russian guide. So far, so standard. But, the characters are good enough to make the film watchable and certainly what happens to them is....unpleasant enough that you end up caring about them.
The film uses it's unique setting to strong effect and the first hour or so of the film ends up being honestly tense and atmospheric. The film loses steam however, as so often happens in horror films, when the villains appear. They are not as scary on screen as their implication is and yet they can't help but show them more and more as the film goes on. Even with quick editing and dark lighting, they remove a large amount of the scares from the strong first two thirds of the film. The overall back story for the monsters is pretty weak too and it is just a shame that the film ends with a whimper.
However, the film starts strongly and it isn't a bad film, by any stretch, it's just that the large amount of promise at the start whittles away towards the end and it's not as satisfying as you'd hope.
Oh, speaking of horror, here is a very, VERY red band trailer for the promising remake of The Evil Dead.
Very red band.